Franchise exceeds 31 million copies in circulation
Natsu Hyūga and Touko Shino‘s The Apothecary Diaries (Kusuriya no Hitorigoto) series has added seven million in circulation since the anime adaptation premiered on October 21. The franchise had 24 million books in circulation at the end of September 2023 prior to the anime’s debut, and it has since exceeded 31 million copies. The franchise added three million copies within the first month of the anime’s broadcast.
The anime premiered on October 21 with the first three episodes, and will air for two cours (quarters of a year). Crunchyroll is streaming the anime as it airs in Japan and is also streaming an English dub. The anime’s second cours debuted on January 6.
J-Novel Club publishes the novel series digitally, and it describes the story:
In the East is a land ruled by an emperor, whose consorts and serving women live in a sprawling complex known as the hougong, the rear palace. Maomao, an unassuming girl raised in an unassuming town by her apothecary father, never imagined the rear palace would have anything to do with her—until she was kidnapped and sold into service there.
Though she looks ordinary, Maomao has a quick wit, a sharp mind, and an extensive knowledge of medicine. That’s her secret, until she encounters a resident of the palace at least as perceptive as she is: the head eunuch, Jinshi. He sees through Maomao’s façade and makes her a lady-in-waiting to none other than the Emperor’s favorite consort… so she can taste the lady’s food for poison!
Hyūga began serializing the story on the “Shōsetsuka ni Narō” (Let’s Become Novelists) website in October 2011. Shufunotomo began publishing the novels in print volume with illustrations by Shino in August 2014. Nekokurage launched an ongoing manga adaptation in Square Enix‘s Monthly Big Gangan magazine in May 2017. Square Enix Manga & Books is releasing the manga adaptation in English. The company will also publish the novels in print starting on May 14.